Hearing Health and Technology -- Workshop, Project No. P171200 #00118

Submission Number:
Diana Thompson
See below
Initiative Name:
Hearing Health and Technology -- Workshop, Project No. P171200
Hello, I am legislative liaison for the Hearing Loss Association of Washington, but am writing these comments on behalf of myself. I have been very active in trying to get Washington State to cover adult hearings under Medicaid. Regarding Over the counter (OTC) hearing aids here are my comments: a) I believe OTC hearing aids should be required to have telecoils. Telecoils enable persons to hear in looped settings. Because of the hard work of "Let's Loop Seattle" an increasing number of settings are looped in our state. (theatres, City Council chambers, religious facilities, etc.) b) I believe the term "mild to moderate hearing loss" Needs to be clearly defined. i) Does it mean "mild up to moderate hearing loss"? ii) What frequencies are included in the term moderate hearing loss? Some authorities say moderate hearing loss is from -40 to -60. Other's say it is -40 to -70. iii) What frequencies will be used to determine if someone has moderate hearing loss? High frequency loss is common among older adults, but persons do differ. AND the amount of hearing loss varies at different frequencies. My loss is -25 at 500, -40 at 1,000, -70 at 2000, and -90 at 4000. iv) Does "mild to moderate" hearing loss mean that your loss is never greater in any frequencey than -60 or -70. Finally, on another topic, I believe consulation with a hearing aid professional should be encouraged prior to the purchase of OTC hearing aids. (A loss can be caused by wax. Some seniors will need outside guidance in order to make a hearing aid work or work most effectively. ) Thank you for listening. Diana Thompson